You'll find that it varies from host to host, and this is often indicated on their profile.
Some are excited to meet new people, but can't actually host - so they'll often just say they want to meet you in town for a coffee or similar.
Others will have a bed and a spare room, and can be amazingly generous.
However they do understand that you're ...
The first thing to know about Couchsurfing is that it is completely free. You are not required to "pay" for your stay offering a dinner, bringing a gift, etc.
The only rule that applies is to behave politely. You are not even required to spend some time with your host, even though in some cases this could fall in the "unpolite behaviour".
This said, the ...
There is nothing in the regulations that prevents an applicant from using a hospitality exchange or social networking for accommodation.
They would treat these arrangements in the same way as if friends were offering you a place, but since they are not real friends, you will need to be a bit careful with how you present your evidence. It means you can't ...
So, if you're just joining them for dinner, you're NOT expected to bring a plate.
However, even for a situation like that it's often expected to bring a wrapped gift for your hosts, so certainly if couchsurfing I'd consider bringing something.
Ideally, gifts that can't be purchased in Japan would be a nice idea, and it'd be very special if from your home ...
AirBnb: You can host people in your house and they will pay you for it. You should have your house ready to receive guests, like a clean house, good services like air conditioning, heating, be attentive and polite with your guests. Even some hosts give complimentary services, like breakfast, free beer, water or other things.
It is like a little hotel with 1, ...
To me the 'simplest' solution would be to welcome them to the city, and say you're happy to host, but that you're busy and can really only take people for a couple of days. Ask them which days suit them the best.
It's up to them whether or not that works. They may find something more suitable, or they'll be happy to meet you, and then move on, perhaps to ...
Well the main problem is that the host/hostel staff have yet to meet you. They don't necessarily know you, and they don't know what emergency it will be for.
So the call might go something like:
Operator: What's your Emergency?
Host: Er, I'm not sure. Someone's meant to turn up, and they haven't?
Operator: Can you describe them?
Host: No, I've never ...
It really depends on the host.
I try to help out with dishes and buy & prepare the food, or bring a postcard from your city and leave a nice note on the fridge before you leave. Some hosts expect you to hang out with them. I went to a bar with a local band playing in Vancouver I wouldn't have visited otherwise, and it was actually a nice evening.
Here's my recommendation as a former host of 30+ people on Couchsurfing.
Book commercial accommodation. You never know if you find someone or not, so it's best to prebook something for the duration of your trip, and then cancel as late as possible once you have confirmations for a given night.
Both Booking.com and Hostelworld.com allow free ...
My wife and I have hosted many people from many countries. We give them a nice bed, their own room, usually entertain them and, almost always, breakfast as well.
We are experiencing an increasing number of guests who don't even make a gesture of thanks. When we joined we understood that there was supposed to be some kind of reciprocity. I always offer to ...
If you search for "Belarus invitation" you can find a slew of formal letters that you will need to obtain a visa.
If you are going as a tourist then this particular letter is for you. There is also a post from one of the travel agencies in Belarus about who has to send you one of these letters if you need it.
First of all, I don't think you need to submit proof of accommodation if you are attending a conference. See this page from the Japanese Consulate-General in Boston, US.
Moreover, Airbnb billing receipts are accepted as proof for accommodation for Japanese visas. Since CouchSurfing is a similar service as far as I understand, I don't think this would be a ...
Imagine you're a host. More than a month away probably seems excessive unless there is some special event on. Less than a few days is annoying and risky. Anything in between would probably suit at least some potential hosts just fine.
I hate to be discouraging, but I personally find using Couchsurfing.org while hitchhiking generally not worth the effort:
First of all, since you can't guarantee an arrival date, you need to find a flexible host. This can be tough.
At least when I hitchhike, I don't know exactly which route I'm going to end up taking. It depends a lot on where my rides take ...
I've hosted more than 50 people already living in different cities and I can tell you, depends on! If you really think that you have something to offer and share between both I think you can ask from 3 to 5 days. Have in mind that you read the profile of your host and you think you gonna share something, like teach him german, or how to cook. And he has in ...
The cheapest hotel that I'm aware of in Copenhagen (you can of course find much cheaper hostels) where you have your own private room and bathroom is Cabinn.
They have several locations in Copenhagen, I prefer the one near the main train station, "Kobenhavn City Hotel" as they call it.
The rooms are small, but clean and reasonably comfortable.
There are a variety of home swapping sites, some examples of which are listed in the article 10 things you need to know about home swapping:
Love Home Swap
IVHE (geared more around second/vacation homes)
Every one works slightly differently, but many have options that range from simultaneous exchanges (you stay in their ...
@Ach's comment is the best advice, to get a voucher from a tourist agency. I have used Apon service to do it in the past, although I have never "couch surfed".
Apon service has a website for the tourist invitation letter/voucher.
Once you arrive you will need to register your tourist visa.
What I would like to do is apply for the visa and when I get ...
Check the details on you home auto policy to understand what coverage it provides when traveling. Then, look at you credit cards to see what insurance benefit they have. Beyond that, I've never had to buy additional insurance from the agency.
You will have to carefully read the specifics of where you are allowed to take the car. 99.9%, Belgium and the ...
This answer refers not only to the couchsurfing.org site, but to the plethora of other sites that provide the same function. Among these are gumtree.com and london.craigslist.co.uk and jewgether.org Other sites will undoubtedly join the social phemomenon first uncovered by couchsurfing.org.
There is no need for a grand opus in such matters, but it is ...
As of about two weeks ago, citizens of 80 countries had the visa requirements waived if and only if the arrive at Minsk airport on an international flight (except Russia). They are allowed to stay for up to 5 days.
This came in as I was getting documents together for my trip in May!